If you didn’t know, NBC has created a new show called Emerald City, which is a reinterpretation of the Wizard of Oz. When I first heard about this show I was curious because the world of Oz is definitely a familiar and interesting place for stories. The 2 part pilot episode caught my interest, but felt a little rushed. Now that I am on episode 5 I can definitely say that I am hooked.
The first couple of episodes definitely felt like they were trying to move past the pieces of the story that everyone knows and just dive deep into the craziness that is Oz. They change the story in fairly interesting ways and make the story much deeper than expected. The other piece that makes for an expanded universe is that the story is not just about Dorothy, but about an ensemble cast of characters all with different flaws and motivations. There is just one mystery after another to unfold.
Getting Past the Obvious
Now the first two part episode definitely felt a little rushed, but after getting past it the rush makes some sense. They were trying to move past the standard checks to get to Oz and start the adventure.
So we meet Dorothy who was abandoned as a girl with the Gale’s, which definitely feels suspicious. When she tries to go visit her estranged mother of course is when the tornado hits and suddenly she is in Oz, riding in a police car with a dog (so Toto). The Witch of the East gets hit by the car and assumed dead. Now instead of being praised Dorothy is tortured because apparently only a witch can kill a witch in Oz. By the end of the episode we have met the “Scarecrow” – a soldier who was left for dead and doesn’t remember who he is – and are on the way down the Yellow Brick Road. We have also met Glinda, the Witch of the West, and the Wizard all in the 2 part episode and it moves quickly.
Interesting Twists on Characters
The different twists and the different characters from Oz is actually fascinating. Glinda and the Wicked Witch of the West are actually sisters, apparently all the witches in Oz are considered to come from the same mother. The mythology that they present is very deep, but the interesting part is that magic is now forbidden in Oz. There is an odd balance between the Wizard, who banned magic, but saved the Emerald City, and the witches. The “Tin Man” is a boy who almost died and was saved by replacing the majority of his body with metal. An interesting thing in Oz is that they believe in magic, but not science, so when presented with science they read it as magic. It makes for some interesting moments with Dorothy – who knows science.
I feel like for every reveal the show introduces another mystery. I mean the original mystery is who was Dorothy’s mom and why was she abandoned. Then there are many different characters who appear to be more than they seem. The three biggest power players all seems to have plans within plans and so far I am not sure what those plans are. In the most recent episode there was a predictable reveal, but it does open up a whole other line of intrigue to explore. The nice part is even with the ever-growing mysteries they also do keep answering some of the questions along the way. At the same time it will be interesting to see where they end up on the show.
It is interesting that for a time Hulu was the only place that we could watch our TV shows online. We had originally started paying for Hulu because we could get previous TV shows and paid a cheaper price with a student discount. But we recently dropped Hulu.
I remember talking about how I wish with cable companies you could pick and choose what channels you were going to watch, but that was not an option. Now even though the cable company is still trapped in the typical bundling model we are actually getting more choices with show applications for our devices. This allows us as consumers to choose what we want to consume and from whom. Now some are still making users be tied to a cable subscription, but it feels like it is only time until even they offer a pay-to-watch model or just give other options.
So David mentioned that David and I wanted to talk about the new show we discovered called Believe that we were really enjoying. But of course when I went to look at when it premiered what do I find out except that it got cancelled on May 9. The show had only started on March 10 and two months later it has been cancelled. I think it didn’t have the best chance partly due to it’s time slot, Sunday night is usually not a great starting night for a tv show. It just seems sad because this is the second decent science fiction show, in my humble opinion, to have been cancelled. Almost Human, a show about the police force in the future and the human / robot relationship between a forced police partnership. The relationship between Kennex and Dorian was so good and it had so much potential, but it just did not hit its stride. Shows get cancelled for a variety of reasons and Science Fiction shows seem to have a tougher time getting an audience. Both of these shows got cancelled, but I think of some of the problem was how they were handled. Continue reading
Guest post by Leah, who writes at I’ll Make It Myself!, a food blog about gender, geekery, and vegetable alternatives to humans; and The Lobster Dance, a blog about Japan, gender, media, and culture.
[breaks into your house] YO LET ME TELL YOU ABOUT HANNIBAL. Via Hanigrahmy
Warning: spoilers will be very mild and images will be safe for work, but there’s some discussion of gore, violence, and sexual harassment.
Thanks to the wonders of video-on-demand services, I don’t often watch TV shows when they air, but every Saturday morning I launch myself out of bed to watch Hannibal over my morning coffee. I am not a Silence of the Lambs fan.
This is my design.
Posted in Feminism, TV Shows
Tagged cannibal, crime drama, fandom, fannibal, feminism, gender representation, hannibal, Hannibal Lecter, murder mystery, NBC, serial killers, suspense, TV, Will Graham
If you’re anything like me, you watch shows like Eureka on the Syfy channel and Big Bang Theory on NBC and think – some of this stuff is way over my head. Particle physics, string theory, artificial intelligence… those things are for geniuses, which definitely excludes me. But watching a recent Ted Talk made me think maybe we don’t give ourselves and our kids enough credit. Maybe a place like Eureka could actually exist if we let it.
Posted in IRL, Science Fiction, Science Fiction Today, Tech, TV Shows
Tagged Education, Eureka, Ken Robinson, NBC, Scott Westerfeld, Sugata Mitra, SyFy